Month: October 2017

Do You Know How Your Dog Feels In That Costume?

dog halloween costumes

by Ryan O’Quinn, October 30, 2017

Last year, we published a blog post called Your Dog’s HOWL-O-WEEN Survival Guide, which addressed issues concerning the health, safety and well-being of your dog on Halloween.

This year, we decided to discuss a more specific topic of whether your dog actually likes you dressing him/her up as Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton. Be careful, dressing your dog up in either one of those costumes could come off quite insulting to your fur buddy. You’ve been warned! That said, we must deviate away from anything political…

Your dog may react to wearing a costume much like he does when he hears fireworks on the Fourth of July: run and hide. The most important thing to be aware of is your dog’s response. If your dog shows signs of irritation or discomfort, it’s best to remove the costume. You can try it again another time, but be mindful that he just might not be comfortable with dog Halloween outfits.

Signs to look for that tell you your dog’s just not into it: eyes roll back or he’s looking to the side, has folded ears, tail between his legs, scratches at the costume, or makes a mad dash to get as far away from you and that dreadful canine costume as possible. Those are pretty clear signs you should stop while he still loves you.

One of the biggest concerns when clothing or dressing up a dog is the weather and climate in which you live. Clothing a dog in cold weather is actually ok, especially if you notice your dog shivering. However, it does not necessarily mean he’ll like it.

Conversely, heat stroke is another problem you can encounter if you live in warmer climates. If your dog is a type of breed that comes equipped with an amount of fur that would keep an Eskimo warm in the Tundra, you may want to reconsider costuming your dog. There are certain materials like wool and nylon that hold heat longer than others like cotton and silk. The signs and symptoms below could mean your dog is over-heated and possibly lead to heat stroke.

According to PetMD, hyperthermia can be categorized as either fever or non-fever hyperthermias; heat stroke is a common form of the latter. Symptoms of both types include:

  1. Panting
  2. Dehydration
  3. Excessive drooling (ptyalism)
  4. Increased body temperature – above 103° F (39° C)
  5. Reddened gums and moist tissues of the body
  6. Production of only small amounts of urine or no urine
  7. Sudden (acute) kidney failure
  8. Rapid heart rate
  9. Irregular heartbeats
  10. Shock
  11. Stoppage of the heart and breathing (cardiopulmonary arrest)
  12. Fluid build-up in the lungs; sudden breathing distress (tachypnea)
  13. Blood-clotting disorder(s)
  14. Vomiting blood (hematemesis)
  15. Passage of blood in the bowel movement or stool
  16. Black, tarry stools
  17. Small, pinpoint areas of bleeding
  18. Generalized (systemic) inflammatory response syndrome
  19. Disease characterized by the breakdown of red-muscle tissue
  20. Death of liver cells
  21. Changes in mental status
  22. Seizures
  23. Muscle tremors
  24. Wobbly, uncoordinated or drunken gait or movement (ataxia)
  25. Unconsciousness in which the dog cannot be stimulated to be awakened

Unfortunately, canine costumes are not breed-specific. Although dogs that are calm and well-balanced seem to tolerate Halloween canine costumes slightly more than the more neurotic ones, using a costume to cover up their natural coat can cause them stress and anxiety. It’s all about the dog’s temperament. If you’re the kind of dog owner who played dress up when your dog was just a pup, you may have better luck. A dog that has never worn a costume before, but is highly motivated by praise, could do great in a costume if the owners praise the dog during the experience. Rewarding them with a treat couldn’t hurt either.

So, regardless of what we say or any recommendations we make here, we know if you have your mind set on costuming your dog this Halloween you’re gonna do it. Totally fine by us! We love to see the creativity that goes into each canine costume, especially when it matches the personality of the dog wearing it.

On that note, we’ll leave you with these great canine costumes for some ideas if dressing up your pooch this Halloween.

Dog Diarrhea Got You Down?

Image result for dog diarrhea carpet

by Ryan O’Quinn, October 20th, 2017

It’s probably happened to you. You kiss your pup goodnight then hit the sack for a nice, restful sleep. You awake at sunrise, refreshed. That is until you walk into the other room to find your perfect pup had a bit of a “blowout” in the middle of the night. Dog diarrhea everywhere! What’s more? It’s not on the tile or hardwood floors. Nope, it’s on the carpet.

After a brief moment of “WTF” just happened in here, reality sets in along with a realization that this mess isn’t gonna clean itself. It’s definitely not how any dog owner wants to start the day, but it must be done.

You have a couple options. Deal with it now or wait until after you get home from work. There are benefits to both. Deal with it now and you come home later to a (hopefully) clean place. Deal with it after work and you will give the diarrhea time to dry. The benefit with the latter is it’ll be easier—drier, flakier—to remove from the carpet. If you try to remove it immediately, you run the risk further embedding it into the carpet as it’s  in its wetter form.

You decide to tackle the problem head-on, right now. Great! Here’s what you’re going to need to get the job done:

-Pair of latex gloves

-Plastic trash bags (13 gallon)

-Warm water

-White vinegar

-Large plastic/Tupperware bowl (x as many stains)

-Paper towels


-Baking soda

-Vacuum Cleaner or shop vac

1. Take one of the large bowls and place it over the stain. You want the diarrhea to dry so you are not smudging it around the carpet making it worse. Placing the bowl over the stain will also confine the odor so the room does not stink any more than it has to.

2. Wearing the latex gloves with an open a plastic garbage bag by your side, begin to remove any excess dog poop you can by scooping with the paper towel. Be careful not to push the stain deeper into the carpet or drop any poop particles around you. Repeat as needed. You will likely go through quite a bit of paper towel during this step.

3. In another bowl, combine 1 cup warm water with 1 cup white vinegar. Or, for larger mixes, just make sure to use equal parts of water and vinegar. Mix gently and then let it sit until step 5.

4. Use the fork to scrape up any of the dried feces. The motion should be kinda like raking leaves. (Just remember to throw the fork away afterward. You won’t want to eat from it again, regardless if it’s been washed.) Remove as much of the dried feces as possible. Be careful. If you notice the carpet fibers pulling up or becoming damaged, stop right away.

5. Run the vacuum cleaner or shop vac over the area/stain removing any chunks, chips, or flakes that have come loose when using the fork.

6. Pour the water/vinegar solution over the remains of the stain. Blot the solution from the carpet with paper towels until you absorb the excess liquid.

7. Add more of the vinegar solution to the area if you still notice the stain. Continue to blot the area until you remove the stain.

8. Sprinkle an overly-generous amount of baking soda over the area to remove any lingering odors. Let the baking soda sit for a couple hours.

9. Vacuum the area to remove the baking soda and remaining fecal matter.

10. Lastly, spritz the area with some disinfecting spray such as Lysol to kill any remaining bacteria.

Another option to try are essential oils such as lavender and lemon oil. These oils help remove the odor from the carpet, naturally. (This would best be done in place of, or, after step 9 above.)

All that said above, it can be quite a bit of work. Dirty work at that. It really depends on what kind of a job your pup did on the room(s) in question. If you’re the kind of person who cringes at the thought, sight or smell of doggie diarrhea, you can always leave the mess to the pros. (That would be us!) We offer a 24-Hour Emergency Response service for exactly these types of situations.